a tumblelog
week 21, 2019

Ten Simple Rules for Better Figures

we aim to provide a basic set of rules to improve figure design and to explain some of the common pitfalls.

Ten Simple Rules for Better Figures

Fundamental design principles for non-designers

This one is for all the content creators out there who can’t afford to pay a professional designer, as well as for non-designers on a team where designers are always too busy to help. If you can follow these simple steps, I guarantee your designs will look better.

Fundamental design principles for non-designers.

Knee surgery

The 12th of November 2018 I broke the kneecap (patella) in my right knee. Two days later I got surgery and the 2 pieces were put together with metal wires. Today this metal support got removed. All went well and I had no pain afterwards.

X-rays of right knee showing metal wires around patella
X-rays of the right knee showing the metal wires around the patella. November 14, 2018.
X-ray of right knee showing metal wires around patella
X-ray of the right knee showing the metal wires around the patella. Januari 3, 2019.

Open a man page as PDF on macOS

In the afternoon I found a nice Bash function in the comments section of Hacker News by user danielecook, reformatted to fit the width of this page:

function pman() {
    man -t ${1} |
    open -f -a  \

It calls man with the given argument and the -t option, which outputs the man page as PostScript. This output is piped to the open command with the -f option to read from standard in, the pipe in this case, and opens the application specified with -a with this output.

Very neat.

The Art of Command Line

This is a selection of notes and tips on using the command-line that we've found useful when working on Linux. Some tips are elementary, and some are fairly specific, sophisticated, or obscure. This page is not long, but if you can use and recall all the items here, you know a lot.

Check out The Art of Command Line

Python built-ins worth learning

You don’t need to learn all the Python built-in functions today. Take it slow: focus on those first 20 important built-ins and then work your way into learning about others if and when you eventually need them.

Python built-ins worth learning a great and long article by Trey Hunner; recommended.

Finding duplicate files with jdupes

In the evening I wrote a blog article on how to install jdupes and use it to find duplicate files: Finding duplicate files with jdupes.

The program is a faster alternative to fdupes. If you like the latter you will love the former.

SSH disconnects and Wi-Fi

In the afternoon I suddenly figured out why my SSH connections to a virtual machine kept getting disconnected despite having the following two lines in my ~/.ssh/config:

ServerAliveInterval 30
ServerAliveCountMax 4

It turned out that the virtual machine still used Wi-Fi to connect to the local network, and because I am quite far away from the router this connection drops regularly. Switching the VM to cabled network interface en0 fixed this issue.

Twitter Cards and Facebook Sharing

In the evening I wrote a short article for my main blog on how to create a Twitter card: an image, a title, and a description that are associated with a link you share on Twitter. With the right choice of meta-tags the card works on Facebook as well. Read all about it in Twitter Card and Facebook Sharing